Saturday 10 June 2017

Theresa May's vanity election was a disaster for the Tory party

The unprecedented scale and ferocity of the Tory smear-mongering campaign did just enough to stop the Labour surge from propelling Jeremy Corbyn into 10 Downing Street (the election swung on a few hundred thousand votes in marginal constituencies) but Theresa May's vanity election has backfired spectacularly. 

Not only is she now reliant on a bunch of Northern Irish extremists (who make what remains of UKIP look sane and sensible in comparison), these outrageous smear-mongering tactics have created a demographic time bomb for the Tory party.

When Theresa May called her vanity election she massively underestimated Jeremy Corbyn, and she massively underestimated the power of social media too.

She thought that she could browbeat the public into hating Corbyn by spewing £millions upon £millions worth of attack ads all over social media, but although effective on some people, a sponsored political ad has a tiny fraction of the persuasive impact of something that's been shared by an actual friend.

You can't just buy success on social media, you have to make it naturally.

Theresa May was also helped out by the depraved hacks who work for the billionaire tax-dodging press barons. These Tory attack dogs held her to account over absolutely nothing (her extraordinary public safety failures that resulted in the Manchester and London Bridge, her cowardice, her shambles of an uncosted manifesto, her evasiveness, her plan to feed our school kids 7p breakfasts, her outright and provable lies about Diane Abbott and Labour's immigration policies) because they were 100% focused on slinging as many insults, abusive comments, misrepresentations, smears and outright lies as possible at Jeremy Corbyn and Labour.

Just look at the state of the Daily Mail. 13 consecutive pages of anti-Labour smears, and not one single positive reason to vote Tory!
Yes, millions of people were duped by this kind of shockingly biased smear-mongering, but the problem for for the Tories is that millions upon millions of people also saw through the savage Tory propaganda campaign, especially the under-45s who almost all have access to the Internet and to immediate rebuttals of the Tory lies.

People who were duped into voting Tory by a campaign of lies and smears can be snapped out of it. Of course it won't be easy, but it's surely possible to get through to the several million of them who are not the kind of permanent Tory tribalists who would still vote blue even if the party was led by Abu Hamza.

The Labour vote rose by an incredible 3.5 million, bolstered by a significant increase in the youth turnout. This 3.5 million may not stay with Labour forever, but one thing is for sure, they're not going to be turning out to vote Tory any time soon.

Once you've realised that someone is lying through their teeth to you, it's almost impossible for them to win your trust back.

What Theresa May's extreme muck-slinging campaign has done is created a significant demographic of politically engaged anti-Tory voters who are very attuned to spotting political lies.

The gullible people who allowed themselves to be conned into voting against their own interests by the Tory smears and lies can possibly be won over in the future because the number of people reading newspapers is declining every year, and the number of people using social media for their news is still growing rapidly as smartphones become the norm.

It's also worth noting that quite a lot of the frightened pensioner demographic the Tory smear-mongering campaign was most effective on will die before the next election.

Those of us who saw through the concerted campaign of lies and smears by the Tory party and their cheerleaders in the mainstream media will be lifelong anti-Tory voters, with a very healthy distrust of the mainstream media too.

Throwing away a 24/25% poll lead in seven weeks was an absolute disaster for the Tory party, and their depraved smear-mongering tactics will be even less effective the next time around for the reasons outlined above.

Theresa May's vanity election has done more than just force the Tories into bed with the DUP fanatics, it's also seriously damaged their chances of clinging onto power at the next election (whenever that may be).

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